By Dayo Johnson
Mr. Tolu Babaleye is Director-General of Ondo State Network for Bola Tinubu. In this interview, Babaleye says Vice President Yemi Osinbajo has dared his destiny helper with his presidential ambition, saying he lacks electoral value in Lagos.
At what point did Tinubu, Osinbajo break ties?
I am not aware that the ties broke. I don’t think Tinubu is disappointed with what Osinbajo did but many of his supporters are. Ambition is a very difficult thing and there is no way you can suppress a man with ambition. The Vice President has his ambition and feels he can dare anyone including his destiny helper and highest promoter.
Reports suggest Osinbajo quietly moved his membership of Lagos APC to Ogun APC in 2021. Was that the beginning of the breaking of ties with Tinubu?
This is not correct. The truth is that Osinbajo had no electoral value in Lagos where he used to vote because the place is dominated by the Igbo.
It was Tinubu who even advised him to relocate his PVC to Ogun. Nobody will suspend anyone for declaring to contest an election. If Osinbajo wins in the primary, he will still need Tinubu to fly.
People shouldn’t create unnecessary tension and enmity that may be difficult to settle. The truth is that Osinbajo has no electoral value in Lagos. Attached is the result of the last election from the unit where Osinbajo voted in Lagos.
Relocating to Ogun is a political calculation to bring better results and not because anyone will suspend him for exercising his constitutional right.
This is the result of Osinbajo’s unit in the 2019 presidential poll: Vice President Yemi Osinbajo (VP) Polling Unit Code 33, Unit 2 Victoria Garden City, Lagos: Presidential: APC – 229, PDP – 425; senatorial: APC – 261, PDP – 414, Rep: APC -190, PDP -268.
Why was the step necessary?
The step was necessary to make sure he wins his unit and ward in the next elections because a politician that fails to win his unit and ward is irrelevant in politics.
Was it in anticipation of running for President or some other reasons?
It was not, but to give him a base. For instance, it was also at that period that Osinbajo built his first house in Ikenne.
How are All Progressives Congress, APC, governors and National Assembly, NASS, members divided by Tinubu, Osinbajo, Amaechi, Umahi and others’ ambitions?
The result of the primary election will show that but what I know is that Tinubu is well prepared for the primary election. If you also know the history of the 9th National Assembly, you will know the role Tinubu played in birthing its leadership, all these will work for him.
You also saw the way he was received when he visited the NASS complex about three weeks ago. Tinubu has really laboured and deserves the ticket of APC.
What options are open to Tinubu now that he has very powerful forces to contend with? It is suggested in some quarters that he may head to Social Democratic Party, SDP, if he doesn’t pick the APC ticket…There is only one option available and it is to win the APC presidential ticket. What is SDP?
Did you see anyone that went to SDP in Ondo State? The people who went to SDP in Kwara have nothing to do with Tinubu. They have their issues with Kwara State governor.
Tinubu has even appealed to them to return to APC because you don’t abandon your house in the name of anger. Those linking Tinubu with SDP are fifth columnists working with a particular candidate who cannot even smell the ticket of APC because Tinubu is everywhere.
Those people working for that candidate are majorly PDP members who do not want Tinubu to emerge but they want a weak candidate that can be defeated easily. We know their game plan and we shall beat them to it.
But some of Tinubu’s men in Ondo and Kwara were said to have gone to the SDP following the crisis in APC in their states…This is not true.